A few months ago, I was talking to a friend of mine who had recently registered as an ACCA student. Like the Duracell® Bunny, he was rearing to get started. He was contemplating taking the 3 introductory papers (F1, F2, & F3), as well as F4 (Corporate & business law). Now, this friend has a job at an International company, where he often works 8am-7pm (if he’s lucky!)
Most of us new to professional accounting exams want to take as many papers as possible, and hopefully finish the qualification quickly. While this is possible, the truth is that (the rest of one’s) life often gets in the way!
Plainly put, there is no point registering, and paying for 4 exams, when work and other commitments does not give time for studying for 4 exams. I have found that students who pay for more exams at a sitting than they can study for have a lower chance of passing than those who take just 1 or 2 papers at a time, and prepare adequately.
The beauty of ACCA is in having the flexibility to take the exams at one’s own pace. Aside from the June/December exam dates, computer-based exams (CBE) are available for F1-F3 in Nigeria, and Ghana. The ACCA website has a list of all centres for CBEs.
If properly planned, the CBE can be taken, as well at the June/December exams. For example, my friend – who is bent on finishing quickly – is taking CBE for F1 and F2 in Lagos, in August, and then sitting for F3 & F4 in December. Considering his job and other commitments, it is works out better for him to study for 2 exams at a time, rather than 4.
New ACCA students; professional exams on its own can be daunting, without the added stress of biting of more that you can chew. The ACCA offers flexibility with its exam sitting that is there to be taken advantage of! Know that you aren’t restricted to just the June/December exam sittings. The Computer-based exams can ease the pressure of having to take 4 papers at a go.